Traffic Violations in New Mexico 101
How you drive your vehicle and how you handle moving violations affect whether you keep your driving privileges. Depending on your behavior, these actions could get those privileges suspended or lead to even worse consequences.
The state of New Mexico uses a point system that penalizes you for accumulating points.
New Mexico Points System
Points are assigned for offenses committed in New Mexico and for those offenses New Mexico drivers commit in other states. The points are assigned based on New Mexico’s table and not that of the other state.
How Long Do Points Stay On Your Record?
The MVD removes points from your record after a full 12 months.
License Suspension and Reinstatement in New Mexico
In New Mexico, your license can be suspended for points and for driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.
If you accumulate between seven and 10 points, a magistrate may recommend that your license be suspended for a period of up to three months. The state will follow the recommendation. If you accumulate 12 points or more, your license will be suspended for 12 months.
If your license is suspended for points, you’ll need to complete a state-approved driver safety class and retake the knowledge and vision tests before your license is reinstated.
The state will also suspend your license for up to one year for driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs. Completion of a DWI Prevention and Education Course is required for reinstatement. The state also can suspend your license for refusing to take a breathalyzer or blood test when asked to do so.
When you receive a traffic ticket, you can plead guilty and pay it or contest it. If you choose to pay it, you may do so in person, by mail, and, sometimes, by phone. The payment options will be listed on the ticket. If you choose to contest it, you’ll have to appear in person on the date specified; if you fail to do so, a bench warrant may be issued for your arrest, and your license suspended the next time you try to renew it.
Failing to pay your traffic ticket can result in additional fines, jail time, and license suspension or revocation.
Red light tickets issued by cameras are handled differently. You pay them or contest them based upon the information on your ticket.